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Retail woes: 5 big brands that may not be around much longer

The power of a brand is that it can instantly give consumers the impression of quality and consistency. A great brand is an assurance that a product or service is worth the asking price and more.
While the whole structure of Sears Holdings (NASDAQ: SHLD) looks like it’s teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, Kmart may be the division of the company that succumbs first — the lamb that’s sacrificed in an effort to save the Sears brand. Sears chairman and CEO Eddie Lampert swore last year he wasn’t shuttering the Kmart chain despite all appearances to the contrary, saying that as long as one store remained profitable, there would always be one open. Though the chain still shows an operating profit at the moment and its sales aren’t declining as quickly as Sears’, it’s still being dramatically downsized, and it may ultimately shrink to the point of disappearing.
The Limited was once a popular working woman’s clothing brand owned by Limited Brands, which also owns Victoria’s Secret and Bath & Body Works. But the parent company must have seen the writing on the wall when it sold The Limited to private-equity firm Sun Capital Partners. The Limited ended up closing every single one of its 250 brick-and-mortar stores and firing 4,000 employees, with the intent to move all its inventory online.
Toymaker Mattel (NASDAQ: MAT) is reeling from the poor retail environment that caused Toys R Us to go bankrupt, as well as Hollywood’s bust of a summer blockbuster season. So bad was its third-quarter earnings report that it ended up suspending its dividend, a step few companies take unless they’re in truly dire straits.
The once venerable department store chain J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP) is circling the drain right along with Sears. The retailer had briefly shown signs of a comeback, but its recently released third-quarter earnings report fueled speculation that all of the changes it made may have been for naught.
It was expected that when Linens n Things went bankrupt, Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ: BBBY) would pick up the ball and keep running downfield. Instead, Amazon suddenly became a viable competitor to home goods retailers, even as mass merchandisers like Walmart, Costco, and Target expanded their selections.

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Posted by on Nov 13 2017. Filed under National news. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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